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Using TV To Enhance Classroom Curriculum



The Forsyth County School District in Georgia currently serves over 30,000 students in 30 different schools and has plans to expand and eventually serve over 50,000 students. Forsyth is always looking for ways to incorporate new technologies in their classrooms to enrich their curriculum. SnapStream gave them a simple and cost-efficient method of incorporating TV in the classroom.

The Old Way
Many of Forsyth's older classrooms include TVs and VCRs that were used for classroom educational video. While these classrooms were "video capable," integrating TV programming into the classroom was still a highly manual and time-consuming process, both for teachers and media specialists.

Problems:

  • Prior set-up of banks of TVs and VCRs was not user-friendly and they took up too much physical space

  • Setting up recordings was a hassle and an inconvenience for teachers who would have to enlist the help of the media specialists

  • Searching for pertinent TV shows was manual and time consuming

  • Cataloging and storing banks of VHS tapes was not ideal for the school’s media specialists


The Forsyth County School District needed a less time-consuming and more cost-effective solution to incorporate TV into the classroom.

The SnapStream Way

The Forsyth County School District needed an easier way of incorporating TV into the classroom while at the same time eliminating the bulk and clutter of TVs, VCRs, and VHS tapes, making it easier for teachers to use TV in the classroom.  The SnapStream TV search appliance addressed those needs.

  • In the latest six schools, each classroom is set up with a projector screen, a cable feed, and the SnapStream Link Client software on each teacher’s computer

  • Each teacher has the ability to schedule TV recordings and search through the recordings for subject-related material – making it simple to enhance their curriculum with relevant television

  • The Access Control feature with the integration to their Active Directory makes it simple to selectively grant permissions to teachers and administrators. For example, administrators can grant teachers permission to schedule recordings and search, but only grant media specialists permission to delete recordings.


With SnapStream, the Forsyth County School District is able to easily incorporate TV in the classroom. Previously, searching for pertinent TV shows and manually stocking and inserting VHS tapes was a hassle for teachers; and for the media specialists, storing and cataloging all the recorded VHS tapes for future reference was time consuming and inefficient. With SnapStream, they have eliminated those problems. To date, 40 teachers are using the client software; during their training, teachers responded enthusiastically to its ease of use – saying SnapStream makes supplementing lesson plans with TV effortless. Director of Technology Services, Mark Klingler adds, “Its simple easy-to-use interface gives teachers the ability to record and search straight from their desks.”

Figures


Figure 1: Forsyth County School District teacher setting up programs to record.


Figure 2: Forsyth County School District teacher searches TV recordings.


Figure 3: Forsyth County School District teacher sifts through TV search results.